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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • SPANGLES: THE CONTINENTAL CIRCUS

Lever of Power: 1942

Lever of Power: 1942

August 1942. "Women in industry. Aircraft motor workers. A million-dollar baby, not in terms of money but in her value to Uncle Sam, 21-year-old Eunice Hancock, erstwhile five-and-ten-cent store employee, operates a compressed-air grinder in a Midwest aircraft motor plant. With no previous experience, Eunice quickly mastered the techniques of her war job and today is turning out motor parts with speed and skill. Note protective mask and visor, two vital safety accessories." Photo by Ann Rosener for the Office of War Information. View full size.

 

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Why we fight

The safety gear can't hide it, & her ID badge confirms it. Eunice is a looker.

Think I found her

If so Hancock is her married name. Unice Hancock age 19 found in the 1940 US Census in Detroit MI with husband John, an auto worker.

Good to see

Finally see a more-or-less candid picture of how war workers looked. They too a lot of carefully posed pictures of over-dressed women in immaculate conditions. This gal looks like she really did work all day! A bit dirty herself, not obviously posed, lit with a single flash on or near the camera, and the environment looks like lots of grinding was done - a gritty, filthy job.

N.A. Woodworth Co.

Eunice is working at the N.A. Woodworth Co. (later ITW Workholding) in Ferndale, Michigan. A short article about Woodworth and the 50 "girls" that worked there appeared in the July, 1942 issue of Popular Mechanics.

Woodworth also won an Army-Navy pennant in 1942, for outstanding performance in war production.

Maybe someone else can find background on Miss Hancock. I did some searching, but the closest I could find was a Eunice Hancock Jobe, who was born in Pennsylvania in 1921, and died in Pa. in 2008. Her obituary, though, says Mrs. Jobe worked as a clerk at Ingersoll-Rand from 1941-1982.

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